This paper is an introduction to discuss sexuality and the chronically ill older adult.
Sexuality is not discussed enough when considering the lives of older adults. We as a people
assume that aging brings changes and that sexuality is not a topic that concerns older adults. In
older adult’s events bring about a remarkable modification in awareness and understanding of
sexuality. The highly-publicized events following the release of the medication Viagra provided
a vivid example of such an event. Suddenly the country was swept with evidence that older
adults are vitally concerned with sexuality. An issue of sexuality in couples dealing with
dementia into sympathetic attention has brought more attention pertaining to the older adult.
While we still see many casual advertisements and media stories show sexuality only with the
young, there has been a model shift in my lifetime toward a greater understanding that sexuality
is an important part of life.
Society falls short on two counts. First, society fails to recognize the importance of
sexuality to the well-being of the elderly. Secondly, society helps to impose barriers which
results in the sexuality of older adults being devalued (Ballard E: Attitudes, myths and realities:
Helping family and professional caregivers cope with sexuality in the Alzheimer’s patient. Sex
Disability 13(3): 255–277, 1995.). Society looks at the older adult as settled and not interested in
Sexuality. Older adults are interested in sexuality than we think. Larsen, Miller-Kahn and
Ostrow, Flodberg (11), state that the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1975 defined sexual
health as “the integration of the somatic, emotional, intellectual, and social aspects of sexual
being, in ways that are positive, enriching and that enhance personality, community and love” (p.
300). Sexuality can give... [continues]
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(2011, 03). Sexuality and the Chronically Ill Older Adult: a Social Justice Issue. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 03, 2011, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Sexuality-And-The-Chronically-Ill-Older-640685.html
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"Sexuality and the Chronically Ill Older Adult: a Social Justice Issue." StudyMode.com. 03, 2011. Accessed 03, 2011. http://www.studymode.com/essays/Sexuality-And-The-Chronically-Ill-Older-640685.html.